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World Bank approves additional US$10 million to enhance Jamaican businesses

Published:Tuesday | February 16, 2021 | 7:31 PM

The World Bank has approved additional financing of US$10 million for the ongoing Jamaica Foundations for Competitiveness and Growth Project.

The additional financing will be used to scale up support for the Government of Jamaica’s business climate reform agenda and contribute to Jamaica’s economic recovery by improving the business environment.  

"This additional financing will support initiatives that encourage business growth in Jamaica and strengthen the environment for private sector investment. These changes are more critical now than ever, as the private sector has been hit hard by the economic and social impacts of COVID-19. The additional financing will help Jamaica build back better through support for reforms to make it easier to do business, which will benefit local entrepreneurs," said Ozan Sevimli, World Bank Resident Representative for Jamaica and Guyana.  

According to the bank, Jamaica is facing significant challenges from the COVID-19 crisis, and the Government has adopted a series of measures to address the deteriorating economic and social situation.

"This additional financing provides technical assistance to improve the investment climate by updating laws, regulations, and legal frameworks, to support a private sector-led resilient recovery. Reforms focus on trading across borders, enforcing contracts, registering property, getting electricity, and getting credit. The project also includes policies and programs for export competitiveness, attracting foreign direct investment, and supplier linkages," a statement from the bank said.

The bank said that in 2014, US$50 million was approved for Jamaica Foundations for Competitiveness and Growth Project, and this has shown encouraging results, supporting 14 new investment climate laws, regulations, and policies that improved Jamaica’s business environment.

In addition, nearly 140 small and medium-sized businesses have benefitted from a line of credit program and over 380 businesses received training support through matching grants.

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